The annual Miles Franklin Literary Award is one of the most illustrious events on the Australian literary calendar.
The award, now worth $42,000, was bequeathed by the will of Australian novelist, Miles Franklin for a 'published novel or play portraying Australian life in any of its phases'. All entries for the award must have been published in the previous calendar year.
The Miles Franklin Literary Award not only rewards Australian authors but, as Frank Moorhouse said in his winner's acceptance speech on 5 June 2001, it also 'honours the great art of story telling.'
In 1948, around six years before her death, Miles Franklin established a bequest in her will, which has become known as the Miles Franklin Literary Award. The income generated from the bequest is used to finance prizes to Australian authors for the advancement, improvement and betterment of Australian Literature.
First won by future Nobel Prize winner Patrick White in 1957 for his novel Voss, the award has achieved prominence around the world, recognising excellence in Australian Literature. White's prize back then was £500.